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International architecture and interiors practice Finkernagel Ross designed a new-build property situated within the ‘Holland Park’ Conservation Area in West London just North of Kensington High Street and South of Holland Park Avenue.
The mews was built by William Scott, a brickmaker based in Hammersmith and originally the stable house accommodation for the main houses on the surrounding streets, the primary purpose of the Mews properties is now residential.
For the Swedish hotelier client, who decided it was time to take a part-time leap to new adventures in London, the ideal property didn’t need to be literally spacious – it just needed to feel spacious, and if it was centrally located with easy access to all that London has to offer, that would be welcomed too.
But as is the case with a lot of our clients, the perfect house in the perfect location is not perfect. It became clear that once a property was found, an architect would be needed to help develop the layouts to be as efficient and spacious as possible. And that’s where Finkernagel Ross came in.
Here Director Catherine Finkernagel discusses the details of the challenging project.
The original brief was to refurbish the building but this project developed into a new-build; what was the thought process behind this?
The way the client envisaged using the property was extensive so it was almost certain that a basement as well as a mansard roof extension would need to be built. A cost benefit analysis showed that it it would be easier, cheaper, quicker and more efficient to rebuild the property in a much more energy efficient and modern way.
How have the new features contributed to the house?
The new mansard roof has added two bedrooms and a bathroom. The new basement has added a TV / cinema room, plant room, a utility room and a WC. The new build status allowed all the floors to be reorganised which resulted in the the light and open feel you see in the photographs now.
Can you talk about the use of materials throughout?
The client had a very clear idea of what she wanted the materials to be and we agreed 100%. The beauty of the natural materials, the simplicity in the way in which they are used and the repetitious, minimal pallet really helps with the calm and open feel of the property. It’s clean and minimal yet warm and cosy.
What was the most challenging part of this project?
The most challenging part was obtaining Planning Consent for the works and then, of course, a global pandemic really didn’t help. We got there in the end.
What has been the most rewarding part about this project?
Seeing it finished!! The Covid Pandemic proved to be quite the challenge. It was all nice to see the quality which transpired. The contractor did a fantastic job.
Photography by Anna Stathaki
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